As you already know, NaNoWriMo is coming up. I have already started drafting a novel that I hope to publish in the next two(ish) years, and I will admit, things have been slow. It’s beginning to be like another term paper that I am putting off until the very last week.
So, in order to speed up the production of the first draft, and finally commit to a novel that I would like to write in November, I have decided to become more dedicated to writing. After all, it is what I want to spend the rest of my life doing.
In order to help myself to continue producing content and better my writing ability, I have integrated some new things into my writing routine.
If you haven’t heard of a word sprint before, it’s basically writing as much as you possibly can within a given amount of time. It can be however short you want it to be, or however long you want it to be. I love this exercise because it forces me to ditch my inner editor for a bit and just write whatever. I have found a very useful website that I enjoy using for this exercise, but you can always just open a blank Google doc and set a timer on your laptop or phone.
This has helped me a lot because it helps me just focus on getting the words down. I have found that I am more focused, and I have produced so much more than I usually do in a regular work day. Sometimes, if I’m bored, I will find some random writing prompt and just write a scene that might just end up in the final draft of my first novel.
Word sprints also tie in with the next part of my new writing routine that I will be talking about.
Daily Word Count Goal
Much like NaNoWriMo, where you have to write at least 1,667 words each day in order to reach 50,000 by the end of the month, I also try to write a specific amount of words each day. Currently, it is about 1,000 words or more each day, but most days I go over that.
I find it better to set my daily word count goal lower than what you think you’ll achieve, so when you go over the goal it feels really rewarding.
Creating A To-Do List
This is something that I used to do while in school, and it kept me from forgetting due dates for assignments. The list I create is a bit different now, but it has the same benefits:
- I don’t forget what I have to accomplish each day, so I have something to remind me while I’m drinking my fourth cup of coffee in order to wake myself up at seven in the morning.
- It keeps me from feeling like I am confined to one specific schedule and can do things at my own pace at different points in the day.
- When it’s in a list format it feels like there is much less to do, so it eliminates the overwhelming feeling I sometimes get when I think about how much work I have in a day.
- It’s very satisfying to look at all of the items on the list crossed off, especially when I finish them early. That way I have more time to clean and just relax with a good book.
I highly recommend a to-do list to anyone that struggles with staying on task. You can simply write it on the notes app on your phone or write it on a miniature post-it note. Either way, it’s a simple and free method that has helped me so much with my writing.
While some days are definitely more stressful than others, I couldn’t be happier with the career path that I have chosen. I get to stay home and do what I love, and Lily loves having me around to keep her company.
My days have been much more productive and while I have been losing a few hours of sleep some nights, I have never felt more alive.
Thank you for taking some time out of your day to read this. I put a lot of effort into my work and I would love to hear what you think!
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